Though classes are not meeting today—SNOWDAY—our semester is well on the way, and in Mario Hernandez’s Bohemia class this week, students are reading Joan Didion’s “On Keeping a Notebook.” With snow everywhere, covering everything, today seems like perfect day to start with blank page and write. Develop the habit. Listen to Didion, for your own sake:

But our notebooks give us away, for however dutifully we record what we see around us, the common denominator of all we see is always, transparently, shamelessly, the implacable “I.” We are not talking here about the kind of notebook that is patently for public consumption, a structural conceit for binding together a series of graceful pensées; we are talking about something private, about bits of the mind’s string too short to use, an indiscriminate and erratic assemblage with meaning only for its maker.



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